30 Apr 2012

Finalists decided at Gauteng Open

Match Report

Photo: Reg CaldecottBen Weekes (AUS)

Top seed Takashi Sanada of Japan and Australian second seed Ben Weekes will meet in Tuesday's men's singles final at the Gauteng Open, a part of the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour, while Kgothatso Montjane will be one of two South African players in main draw singles finals, as she takes on Dutch second seed Sharon Walraven in the women's singles decider.

Third seed Yoshinobu Fujimoto went into his men's semifinal against his countryman Sanada having to go back to 2007 for his only victory in their five previous head-to-heads, but Fujimoto gave himself the opportunity improve his record as he snatched the second set. However, Sanada dominated the third and final set to wrap up a 63 36 61 victory.

The other semifinal was not so close, as Weekes ended the hopes of South African seventh seed Eliphas Maripa 61 63. A fascinating final is in store, based on the evidence of Sanada's previous two matches against Weekes. In 2010 Sanada beat Weekes 7-5 in the third set when the two players met at the Osaka Open, while Weekes edged to a thrilling 67(5) 76(7) 76(3) victory in the quarterfinals of last year's Korea Open.

Montjane progresses as injured Ellerbrock retires

With South Africa's Lucas Sithole already through to the quad singles final, Montjane boosted home fortunes as she reached the women's final when German top seed Sabine Ellerbrock was forced to retire in the third set of their semifinal. 

Ellerbrock beat Montjane in a final set tiebreak when they first met in the final of the 2011 South African Open and the two players again went to a third set in their first head-to-head since then. But with Montjane leading 6-1, 4-6, 3-1, Ellerbrock was forced to retired injured.

McLean and Sithole win thrilling quad doubles final

The first main draw titles of the week to be decided were in the men's doubles and quad doubles.

Ahead of facing each other in the men's singles final Sanada and Weekes clinched the men's doubles crown in three sets. The top seeds made a confident start before Brazilian second seeds Rafael Medeiros and Daniel Rodrigues hit back to level the match. However, Sanada and Weekes ultimately proved stronger in the decider to record a 61 46 62 win.

There was a thrilling outcome to the quad doubles final as Sithole clinched the first of two possible titles. The South African and his American partner Marc McLean came from behind to beat Italian top seeds Marco Innocenti and Giuseppe Polidori 36 62 76(5).